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Pundit Applauds As De Blasio, Spitzer Start Ad Blitz Courting Minority Vote

A Big Chunk Of Votes Up For Grabs As 5-Week Countdown To Primary Begins

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – There is a month to go before the New York City primary and the battle is on for votes. Two of the latest ads from candidates are tailored to the minority community.

Sometimes it’s subtle; sometimes not so much. But in a city where 58 percent of the turnout in the Democratic primary is expected to be from the minority community it just makes sense to spend your ad dollars where the votes are, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported Thursday.

It’s Democratic mayoral hopeful Bill de Blasio’s first campaign ad and he’s using his 15-year-old son, Dante, to tell the story. It’s a reference to his multi-racial marriage, including pictures of the candidate and his wife, which political experts said is intended to win support among minority voters.

“Bill de Blasio will be a mayor for every New Yorker no matter where they live or what they look like and I’d say that even if he weren’t my dad,” Dante says on the ad.

“I think from start to finish every campaign strategist looking at this Democratic primary has got to say this is the crucial vote to get out there to win,” Iona College pundit Jeanne Zaino said.

De Blasio is the first mayoral candidate to try to mobilize the minority vote but probably not the last. After all, blacks and Latinos are expected to be 58 percent of the Democratic primary turnout.

“I think we’re gonna have to see more of [Christine] Quinn out there, [Bill] Thompson out there, certainly [Anthony] Weiner,” Zaino said. “I think de Blasio was smart to get out there early and say this is who I am both personally and also professionally.”

The polls show de Blasio needs to do what he’s doing.

A recent Quinnipiac University poll gave de Blasio 16 percent of the black vote. City Council Speaker Quinn got 21 percent, Thompson, who is black, got 22 percent and Weiner got 24 percent.

Eliot Spitzer is also targeting minority voters in his race to become the next city comptroller. He doesn’t say it per se, but one commercial has many pictures of him with black and Latino voters, and another notes that corporations and Wall Street firms he went after don’t want him as comptroller.

“Which just leaves … you,” Spitzer’s ad says.

“This might be a winning hand for Spitzer, to say I’m not beholden to the Democratic establishment,” Zaino said.

New York City voters have many more political ads to look forward to in the next month. Actually, it’s expected to be a tidal wave, because the primary is less than five weeks away, on Sept. 10 – the make-or-break election to determine who gets on the November ballot.

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